The Holy Family

The Holy Family

c. 1620s

Opaque watercolor and gold on paper

Gift in honor of Madeline Neves Clapp; Gift of Mrs. Henry White Cannon by exchange; Bequest of Louise T. Cooper; Leonard C. Hanna Jr. Fund; From the Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection 2013.312

Location

Did you know?

With hennaed fingertips Mary holds the vase so baby Jesus doesn’t tip it over.

Description

This painting of Joseph, the Virgin Mary, and the infant Jesus is based on European sources, but it also contains several details that are specifically Indian. For example, although Mary is dressed in classical European-style robes, she is adorned with jewelry of rubies and emeralds, the preferred gems of Mughal royalty. Her fingertips are also red with henna, and she wears a bindi on her forehead. The detailed rendering of the vase evokes the Catholic St. Francis as well as Indian worship of the sun. The vessel itself points to the appreciation of Chinese blue-and-white ware imported from imperial Ming-dynasty kilns to the court of Jahangir (reigned 1605–27).

See also

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance information, is based on historic information and may not be currently accurate or complete. Research on objects is an ongoing process, but the information about this object may not reflect the most current information available to CMA. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@clevelandart.org.

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

Is something not working on this page? Please email help.website@clevelandart.org.

Request a digital file from Image Services that is not available through CC0, a detail image, or any image with a color bar. If you have questions about requesting an image, please email imageservices@clevelandart.org.